Sunday, March 14, 2010

Cooking Asparagus and a Garden Video blog

I have a Costco size bag of Asparagus. My family loves asparagus. Usually we like to roast it in a hot oven after tossing them in olive oil, sea salt and herbs d'Provonce with lavender. A creamy, garlicky-lemon sauce for dipping as well as dressing the brown rice and the salad. We can make a meal of it.

This is not our first bag of asparagus this year so I tried some new preparations from "Fields of Greens" by Annie Somerville

I've been missing my Meyer Lemon Trees since the big snow last March. When a tray of them landed in my basket while shopping at Trader Joe's I came home and found a way to use the lemons with the asparagus. Spring Vegetables with Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette. Yellow Potatoes are roasted while shallots and half a red pepper are thin sliced and set to marinate in the salad bowl with some of the vinaigrette. Three inch lengths of asparagus, snap peas, cauliflower and a sliced carrot are blanched in boiling salted water before being plunged into ice water. The warm potatoes and blanched veggies are added to the salad bowl with the rest of the dressing. Plates of this Potato, Asparagus salad are sprinkled with toasted walnuts and given a couple of Nicoise olives.

A big winner was the Spring Tart with Asparagus and Red Onions. There was no magic to this one. A standard tart but the crust was a very simple yeasted tart dough that I found to be nearly as good as a puff pastry crust. Ray still likes a regular pie dough crust best.

The Spring Risotto with Asparagus and Peas was labor intensive. But, it is Risotto! A tomato stock is made ahead of time to replace the cream of most risottos but is still rich with Parmesan cheese.

There are two pasta and asparagus recipes in the book, but I'm looking forward to Asparagus soup with orange creme fraiche.

Now, back to the garden......

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